This is just a drill: Fitzgibbon Hospital to partner with Health Department for POD Drill

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

On Monday, April 6, 2009, Fitzgibbon Hospital will partner with the Saline County Health Department to hold a drill to determine local ability to establish a Point of Distribution (POD) for activation of access to the Strategic National Stockpile of Medications, according to a news release from the hospital.

The scenario for the drill will be that a patient was admitted to Fitzgibbon Hospital and later diagnosed as having active tuberculosis.

In the simulated situation, during the time between admission and diagnosis of the highly communicable disease, all employees of the hospital were exposed or contaminated and must now be tested or vaccinated.

The Hospital Emergency Incident Command System (HEICS) will be activated and an incident command center will be established at the hospital as part of the drill.

In reality, the tuberculosis testing (called a PPD) is required annually of all hospital employees. The drill will provide an opportunity to facilitate this annual testing as well as meeting the hospital's annual obligation to drill for setting up a POD.

The Saline County Health Department is also charged with holding an annual POD drill, so the partnership should prove beneficial to both entities, according to hospital officials.

During the drill, which will commence at 5:45 a.m., a health department representative carrying the proper medications will be taken to the hospital under police escort.

The public is advised that there will be a police presence on the hospital grounds during the early morning hours of April 6 and to remember it is part of the drill.

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